In a bid to encourage private air operators to improve intra-state air connectivity, the State government on Monday slashed its airstrip charges drastically.

While landing charges for each aircraft or helicopter have been brought down from existing Rs. 5000 to Rs. 400, night parking has been made free of cost against the existing charge of Rs. 2500.

Similarly, fire fighting and ambulance purposes, private air operators will be charged only Rs. 500 per landing. These charges were not specified earlier.

The General Administration department issuing a resolution on Monday said, “recently investments in various sectors like steel and mines, power, IT and technical/medical education have come in a big way to Odisha for which air connectivity to various destinations has increased.”

Pointing out that private operators had submitted proposal to start passenger air services from Bhubaneswar to various destination of the State, the government said it was amending earlier resolution for providing a boost for passenger air services to other parts of the State.

However, the airfield and allied facilities charges for private and chartered aircraft or helicopters would come at a higher cost. While landing charges for private aircraft is Rs. 5000, night parking charges have been fixed at Rs. 2500. The resolution says aircraft carrying select group of dignitaries will be exempted from using airstrips in the State.

Greenfield airports

The airfield and allied facilities charges will be collected by authorized employees of the roads and building division concerned under the jurisdiction of the airstrip located.

It is to be noted that the State has a total 17 airstrips and 16 helipads.

The State government recently proposed to develop greenfield airports in five locations — Rayagada, Paradip, Dhamara, Angul and Kalinganagar, which are fast emerging industrial hubs.